On Monday evening in 36 Edgewood, eight of this year’s nine School of Art summer grant recipients presented their projects.
The group of students, composed of seven second-year MFA candidates in Painting/Printmaking — Loren Britton ART ’17, Christie DeNizio ART ’17, Joseph Hoyt ART ’17, Alexander Jackson ART ’17, Hasabie Kidanu ART ’17, Abraham Lampert ART ’17 and Gerald Sheffield ART ’17 — and two in Sculpture — Michael Demps ART ’17 and Young Joo Lee ART ’17 — gave brief overviews of the activities they completed with the support of various awards, including the Alice Kimball English Traveling Fellowship, Royal Drawing School-coordinated grants and residencies, the Gloucester Landscape Painting Prize and the Robert Schoelkopf Memorial Traveling Fellowship.
“[These grants] enable students to go beyond the boundaries of art education to places that haven’t been explored,” said Lee, who received the Kimball Fellowship. Lee used the grant to fund a journey to the demilitarized border of North and South Korea — today, a nature reserve — where she documented her trip with a 25-meter scroll, featuring moments along the border that reveal the contrast between signs of past conflict and “seemingly untouched nature.”
Three other students — Demps, Kidanu and Sheffield — received the same fellowship.
Demps, who travelled to Berlin and Detroit with his award, launched a “comparative study” of the cities, considering the effects of war and industry on cultural production and examining Berlin’s monuments in relation to elements of the Black Lives Matter protests.
Kidanu spent the summer studying Ethiopian scrolls in the Bibliothèque nationale de France, engaging closely with the objects.
“I draw from historical timelines, literature and footage of sites and spaces in attempt to digest … narratives into a series of unfolding images through animation,” Kidanu said. “This was a chance to revisit [the scrolls’] aesthetic qualities on their own terms — not those defined by 20th-century modernists.”
Sheffield was unable to attend the presentations.
Other students participated in residencies coordinated through London’s Royal Drawing School, one of the School of Art’s international partners. Jackson and DeNizio attended the Dumfries Residency — a monthlong program that offers artists the opportunity to live in an historic home on a 2,000-acre Scottish estate as well as a $2,500 award.
Hoyt attended a 10-day painting workshop in Pignano, Italy coordinated through the London-based school, which he combined with travel to Venice as part of a seminar led by history of art professor Tim Barringer and a stint at Sweden’s Sikas Art Center.
“One day strolling in Venice with history of art students, the next taking late-night fishing and watercoloring excursions with other artists in the light of midsummer Sweden, it was an excellent dichotomy,” Hoyt said. “It armed me a bit for the following full immersion into the ridiculously picturesque Tuscan landscape, an experience that would normally be too much for any artist to handle.”
Britton was awarded the Gloucester Landscape Painting Prize, which includes a $5,000 stipend and an artist-residency at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester, Massachusetts. In addition to studying watercolor in Gloucester, Britton used her stipend to fund travel to Los Angeles, where she curated a show at the Eastside International gallery and visited the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, as well as to Serbia, where she worked at a critical theory think-tank.
Lampert received the Robert Schoelkopf Memorial Traveling Fellowship, a $5,000 grant to fund travel to Paris.